RAWALPINDI, July 11: Mohammad Hanif Abbasi, who is facing the ephedrine case, received another blow when the Anti Narcotics Force (ANF) submitted a challan against him in the local court and declared his brother an absconder.
The former Member National Assembly of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz had lost the May 11 elections from NA-56 to Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf Chief Imran Khan, and is one of the 25 aspirants who have filed their nomination papers to contest by-elections from NA-48, Islamabad.
He submitted the nomination papers for the by-election on July 9 before the returning officer of NA-48.
However, the ANF submitted a challan on the following day before the magistrate, which would be forwarded to the control of narcotics substances (CNS) court where the ephedrine case is pending.
Abbasi is accused of misusing 500kg of the controlled chemical (ephedrine) which he obtained in 2010, but instead of using it in medicine he had allegedly sold it to narcotics smugglers. Therefore, the ANF had registered a case against Abbasi and his partners in June last year.
In November 2012, Abbasi obtained bail from the Lahore High Court (LHC) Rawalpindi bench, which had observed that Section 9-C had not been attracted in the said case.
Section 9-C of the Control of Narcotics Substances Act is related to involvement in the narcotics business and an accused may get the death sentence if convicted.
ANF sources said the Supreme Court last week, while hearing the ephedrine case, had directed the trial court to examine charges against the accused people and decide their fate accordingly.
Subsequently, the ANF added Section 9-C in the challan.
The challan also includes the statements of two officials of Arafaat Traders, the Karachi-based medicine distribution company to whom Abbasi claimed to have supplied 11,000 ephedrine-containing tablets.
These officials denied Abbasi’s claim for the supply of the medicine, the challan revealed.
However, the same company had earlier confirmed before the ANF that Abbasi had provided them with ephedrine-containing tablets which Abbasi’s Grey pharmaceutical company had produced from the 500kg ephedrine.
A source said the names of Abbasi’s brother Basit Abbasi and a local distributor of the medicine, Ahmed Bilal, had been added in the challan and despite repeated notices, they had not appeared before the ANF investigation team.
The remaining five accused people in the challan were employees of Grey pharmaceutical company, who were currently on bail.
After the submission of the challan, the court would commence proceedings against Abbasi in the ephedrine case.
When contacted, Hanif Abbasi said his brother was not an absconder and looked after a shop in Rawalpindi. He said certain quarters were against his political role and wanted him out of the local politics.
“After losing NA-56, I never wished to contest the elections, but the party leadership advised me to submit nomination papers from NA-48” he added.
He said after he submitted his nomination papers, the ANF once again started a campaign against him.
“They have destroyed my business and have made my life miserable, and now they are dragging my family members into the controversy. This time, I will retaliate in the same manner and will respond accordingly,” he said.
The former MNA also expressed fear of becoming a “missing person” and said that in such a case, the ANF and the army would be responsible for any mishap.
He also alleged that Arafaat Traders had turned against him because the ANF had offered the company a clean chit in another case in which it was accused of misusing 700kg ephedrine.